Agreement between the Republic of Indonesia and the Portugese Republic on the Question of East Timor

Report
from Government of Portugal
Published on 05 May 1999
The Governments of Indonesia and Portugal,

Recalling General Assembly resolutions 1514 (XV), 1541(XV), 2625(XXV) and the relevant resolutions and decisions adopted by the Security Council and the General Assembly on the question of East Timor;

Bearing in mind the sustained efforts of the Governments of Indonesia and Portugal since July 1983, through the good offices of the Secretary-General, to find a just, comprehensive and internationally acceptable solution to the question of East Timor;

Recalling the agreement of 5 August 1998 to undertake, under the auspices of the Secretary-General, negotiations on a special status based on a wide-ranging autonomy for East Timor without prejudice to the positions of principle of the respective Governments on the final status of East Timor;

Having discussed a constitutional framework for an autonomy for East Timor on the basis of a draft presented by the United Nations, as amended by the Indonesian Government;

Noting the position of the Government of Indonesia that the proposed special autonomy should be implemented only as an end solution to the question of East Timor with full recognition of Indonesian sovereignty over East Timor;

Noting the position of the Government of Portugal that an autonomy regime should be transitional, not requiring recognition of Indonesian sovereignty over East Timor or the removal of East Timor from the list of Non-Self-Governing Territories of the General Assembly, pending a final decision on the status of East Timor by the East Timorese people through an act of self-determination under United Notions auspices;

Taking into account that although the Governments of Indonesia and Portugal each have their positions of principle on the prepared proposal for special autonomy, both agree that it is essential to move the peace process forward, and that therefore, the Governments of Indonesia and Portugal agree that the Secretary-General should consult the East Timorese people on the constitutional framework for autonomy attached hereto as an annex;

Bearing in mind that the Governments of Indonesia and Portugal requested the Secretary-General to devise the method and procedures for the popular consultation through a direct, secret and universal ballot;

Agree as follows:

Article 1
Request the Secretary-General to put the attached proposed constitutional framework providing for a special autonomy for East Timor within the unitary Republic of Indonesia to the East Timorese people, both inside and outside East Timor, for their consideration and acceptance or rejection through a popular consultation on the basis of a direct, secret and universal ballot.

Article 2
Request the Secretary-General to establish, immediately after the signing of this Agreement, an appropriate United Nations mission in East Timor to enable him to effectively carry out the popular consultation.

Article 3
The Government of Indonesia will be responsible for maintaining peace and security in East Timor in order to ensure that the popular consultation is carried out in a fair and peaceful way in an atmosphere free of intimidation, violence or interference from any side.

Article 4
Request the Secretary-General to report the result of the popular consultation to the Security Council and the General Assembly, as well as to inform the Governments of Indonesia and Portugal and the East Timorese people.

Article 5
If the Secretary-General determines, on the basis of the result of the popular consultation and in accordance with this Agreement, that, the proposed constitutional framework for special autonomy is acceptable to the East Timorese people, the Government of Indonesia shall initiate the constitutional measures necessary for the implementation of the constitutional framework, and the Government of Portugal shall initiate within the United Nations the procedures necessary for the removal of East Timor from the list of Non-Self-Governing Territories of the General Assembly and the deletion of the question of East Timor from the agendas of the Security Council and the General Assembly.

Article 6
If the Secretary-General determines, on the basis of the result of the popular consultation and in accordance with this Agreement, that the proposed constitutional framework for special autonomy is not acceptable to the East Timorese people, the Government of Indonesia shall take the constitutional steps necessary to terminate its links with East Timor thus restoring under Indonesian law the status East Timor held prior to 17 July 1976, and the Governments of Indonesia and Portugal and the Secretary-General shall agree on arrangements for a peaceful and orderly transfer of authority in East Timor to the United Nations. The Secretary-General shall, subject to the appropriate legislative mandate, initiate the procedure enabling East Timor to begin a process of transition towards independence.

Article 7
During the interim period between the conclusion of the popular consultation and the start of the implementation of either option, the parties request the Secretary-General to maintain an adequate United Nations presence in East Timor.

DONE in New York on this 5th day of May, 1999.

For the Government of Indonesia:
/s/ Ali Alatas Minister for Foreign Affairs of Indonesia

For the Government of Portugal:
/s/ Jaime Gama Minister for Foreign Affairs of Portugal

Witnessed:
/s/ Kofi A. Annan Secretary-General United Nation